- ... I am more than amused by the prospect of a battle of wits ... though I fear that with you as an opponent... the struggle might well be brief.
Appearing in "The Terrible Triumph of Doctor Doom!"
- Alicia Masters (Only in flashback)
- Carol Landers
- Sam Thorne
- Belle Thorne
- Dr. Hans Stutgart (Only in flashback)
- Gort (Death)
- Harrison (Death)
Races and Species:
- Fantastic Four Jet-Cycle
Synopsis for "The Terrible Triumph of Doctor Doom!"
As Doom and the coach's wife descend to the gallery floor, they see two guards carrying Reed Richards. Belle remarks that Reed is awake and Doom instructs Gort to set Reed on his feet. Reed tells Doom that his plan will fall, but Doom replies that Reed and his friends are completely in his power. Then Doom tells how he trapped the Thing by luring him after Alicia and tricking him into battling Darkoth. Doom gloats that Reed never suspected that the alumni meeting was a sham, even though the townhouse was decorated with paintings from the Latverian, not Latvian, Embassy. Then Doom says he is tired of warfare and intrigue. By right, the Earth should be his to command, he says, but time and again he has been defeated by the power of misguided patriotism. Now he will reverse his former failures with yet another device—a vibration bomb—which will replace people's patriotism with loyalty to himself.
Then Doom sets up a demonstration. His spies have uncovered two traitors, he says as he summons the two guards who are carrying Medusa out of the room. The men, Gort and Harrison, realize that they have been found out and try to flee, but Doom knocks them unconscious with a finger-blast. Then he orders the two men placed beneath the vibration bomb, and when they are properly positioned, Doom turns it on. Gort and Harrison are bathed in waves of sound as their thoughts of betraying Doom are erased. Their minds blank, they are easily hypnotized by Doom into being perfectly loyal subjects. Then Doom orders them to prove their loyalty, and he hands each a weapon. As Doom's harsh laughter echoes through the gallery, Gort and Harrison aim their guns at each other and fire. Wyatt Wingfoot, mounted on the Airjet-Cycle, flies after the Human Torch as they head toward upstate New York, Wyatt knows Johnny is still angry at Reed, and he tries to calm him down, but Johnny knocks him off the cycle. Wyatt falls onto a roof, and Johnny, regretting the accident that he caused, flies down to help.
Fortunately, Wyatt is unhurt, and he is pleased to see that Johnny has finally calmed down. But then a policeman arrives with the remains of the Airjet-Cycle stuck through his patrol car's windshield. Perhaps in New York City, they put up with this, sort of thing, he says angrily, but in Buffalo, they're under arrest. As Carol Landers helps Sue Richards tend her son, Franklin, in Pennsylvania, back in Manhattan Dr. Doom begins the next phase of his operation. The Vibro-Bomb is carefully loaded into the nose of a missile in a special launch silo. All of a sudden, a monitoring device reports a disturbance in Core Control Chamber 12. No doubt his guests are attempting to escape, says Doom as he heads for the chamber. Once the Vibro-Bomb is in orbit around the Earth, he gloats, he can detonate it at will, and the resulting radiation will destroy the personalities of every thinking creature on the planet—excluding himself and a few select aides. Soon all the world will swear allegiance to a gypsy's son.
When Doom arrives at the chamber, he finds pandemonium. Darkoth has broken free of his restraining cell, and the guards are shooting wildly, trying to keep him from wreaking havoc. Darkoth shouts that he will be caged by no one and answers to none but his "master." Then Doom commands Darkoth to stop. Darkoth is incredulous that Doom, who summoned him from the "depths," is also the one who imprisoned him. But, as the one whose spell brought him from the darkness of the underworld, Doom does have the right to restrain him, says the demon. Doom declares that he is more than Darkoth's master: he is his creator.
Then Doom explains how Darkoth came to be. Sometime later, an aircraft carrying the Latverian monarch and some of his guards head out of Manhattan toward the Buffalo jail where the Human Torch and Wyatt Wingfoot are incarcerated. Suddenly an energy bolt melts a hole in the jail wall, and Doom's guards rush in and cover Johnny and Wyatt, who are stunned by flying debris. Doom enters and advises them to come quietly, but Johnny flames on and attacks the guards.
But as Wyatt starts to battle them, a finger-blast from Dr. Doom knocks him out, and another blast does the same to Johnny. Back in Doom's Manhattan headquarters, Darkoth strides through the Central Core Chamber ordering the guards out. He tells them that the "master" has given this task to him. Then he throws a switch that releases Reed, Medusa, and the Thing from the cells they are imprisoned in. He needs their help, he says, for he has been wronged and wants revenge. Reed asks him to explain, and he begins by saying that in the legends of a certain small Balkan country, there is a myth of Darkoth the Death-Demon, who may be summoned by a master of mysticism and used to crush the conjurer's enemies.
Three weeks ago, he continues, he became conscious, and believing himself to be Darkoth, the demon of the legends, he thought Doom was his master. However, he was wrong. He is simply one of Doom's former aides, converted through chemistry and the vibration bomb into the hideous creature that stands before them. Reed, Medusa, and the Thing offer to help, and Darkoth exhorts them to hurry, for Doom will return within the hour. Ben asks Reed whether Darkoth can be trusted, and Reed replies that they have little choice. Doom still holds Alicia and the Thornes captive, and there is still the menace of the vibration bomb to consider. Then Reed begins to get the glimmering of an idea as to how Doom might be stopped.
- Doctor Doom mocks Reed for not recognizing the portraits in the hallway as ones from the Latverian Embassy. Reed noted that he recognized them from somewhere last issue. He would have seen them when the Fantastic Four first visited the Latverian Embassy in Fantastic Four Annual #2.
- Johnny mentions the encounter he and Wyatt had with the Hulk in Marvel Team-Up #18. This issue incorrectly states that that encounter happened in Marvel Team-Up #16.
- Sue is horrified because Reed was forced to shut down the mind of their child Franklin in Fantastic Four #141.
- This issue contains a letters page, Fantastic Four Fan Page. Letters are published from Michael Sloan, Kim English, Brian Smith, Brent Purdam, and Bruce Itinueti.
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